Margaret Matilda White came to New Zealand in the 1880s to join her family when she was 18 years old. She was acquainted with the photographer Hanna, possibly working in his studio. She established her own photographic business, which was not a success, but continued to photograph on an amateur or semi-professional basis until her early death in 1910.
Margaret Matilda White is best known for her photographs of the Auckland Mental Hospital, known at times as the Whau Lunatic Asylum, Oakley Mental Hospital or Carrington Mental Hospital. She photographed the buildings and the staff, making pictures of nurses and attendants with her characteristic structured group poses.
The Museum has a large collection of her glass plates, donated by her son Albert Sherlock Reed, in 1965.
Margaret Matilda White